Graduate employability skills: The voice of Agricultural Technical Vocational Education and Training (ATVET) students in Zimbabwe

Keywords: employability, TVET, ATVET, generic skills, technical skills, graduate attributes


The graduate employability has seen most governments, institutions of higher learning and industries engaging each other, as industries feel universities and colleges are churning out graduates that are not work ready. This has led to many strands to the discourse of graduate employability. One strand of the discourse is whether the higher education institutions should produce work-ready graduates. Another strand of the discourse is on how these institutions can make their graduates work ready, if it is an expectation that the graduates should be work ready. There is also another strand of the discourse on what constitutes graduate employability, that is, what skills make graduates work ready. This article looks at the latter from the perspectives of Agricultural Technical and Vocational Education and Training (ATVET) students in Zimbabwe. The article reports on part of a major study that was conducted on student internship and employability. Data was collected through focus group discussions with final year students from three agricultural colleges, that were selected using an eclectic sampling strategy which incorporated both typical case and maximal variation. The study showed that students view soft skills, namely entrepreneurship, financial literacy, innovativeness, ethics, problem-solving, honesty and some technical skills as essential to them.

Author Biographies

X. Edziwa, University of Zimbabwe, Harare


Department of Art, Design and Technology Education

S. Blignaut, Nelson Mandela University, Gqeberha

Department of Postgraduate Studies


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How to Cite
Edziwa, X., and S. Blignaut. 2022. “Graduate Employability Skills: The Voice of Agricultural Technical Vocational Education and Training (ATVET) Students in Zimbabwe”. South African Journal of Higher Education 36 (2), 99-114.
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